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Greece: Jobless Rate Could Reach 29% Next Year

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StopCartel TV broadcasts live from Athens, Greece weeknights @ 6 pm Athens time. The following post is a loose transcript of the 3 September 2012 broadcast.

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By greydogg and snake arbusto, 99GetSmart

- Greece's largest labor union has warned that the country's unemployment rate -- now at 23.1 percent --will reach 29% in 2013 if the government carries out more planned austerity measures that include --14-16 billion in cuts for 2013-14.

Savvas Rombolis, Head of Research at the GSEE labor union, which represents private-sector workers, said, "The course of the Greek economy is one of decline. In 2012, we are expecting a drop in GDP of 7 percent. Our estimate is that in 2013, unemployment will be between 28% and 29%, more than 1.4 million people. That's because we expect the economy to remain in decline."

That would add 285,000 people to the unemployment rolls, while another 672,000 have seen their benefits expire. The jobless rate for those under 25 is already 54.9%.

Rombolis said the report also found that Greeks on minimum wage have seen their purchasing power reduced to 1979 levels, while those earning an average salary have been pushed back to the equivalent of the early 1980s, based on wage analyses.


- According to an opinion poll from the Financial Timesonly 25% of German citizens feel that Greece will stay in the euro:

Just a quarter of Germans consider that Greece must remain in the Eurozone or receive further financial assistance from other member states, according to a poll published today.

The poll is published as German Chancellor Angela Merkel faces a domestic political dilemma over whether more time or more money should be given to Greece to get back on course to fulfill the terms of the 174-billion-euro loan agreement.

According to a survey by the Financial Times / Harris, Germans' attitudes are almost diametrically opposed to those in Italy and Spain, where those interviewed appeared more reluctant to agree with the possibility of an expulsion of Greece from the Eurozone.

The survey sample of 1,000 adults in Germany, Italy, Spain, France, and Britain showed that only 26% of Germans believe that Greece "will ever repay its loans," as opposed to 77% of Italians and 57% of Spaniards.

Almost half the Germans who were interviewed did not think Greece will be able to undertake economic reforms sufficient to free itself of the need for international financial assistance. In contrast, 88% of Italians and 70% of Spaniards said they feel "relatively certain" that the government in Athens can progress on economic reforms.


- The Turkish newspaper Hurriyet published an article entitled "The Greek Islands Have Much to Offer to Turkish Investors

Just a few days ago Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras commented on reports in France's Le Mondeabout the sale of uninhabited Greek islands, denying talk of sale but mentioning leasing "on condition that it doesn't pose a national security problem." But now the story has changed. Turks are ready to invest and Samaras is ready to sell, according to the story.


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Linda Ross aka greydogg is a blogger at 99GetSmart
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